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Press release

JAMES Study: As mobile Internet takes off, recreational activities of young people remain unchanged despite wider range of media offerings

According to the second JAMES Study conducted by Swisscom and Zurich University of Applied Sciences, more and more young people use the Internet while on the move , prefer smartphones and enjoy accessing several media simultaneously on different devices. The survey also found that despite a wider range of media offerings, young people still enjoy spending their leisure time meeting friends, doing sports or playing music.
Berne, 24 October 2012

Following on from its first study in 2010, Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) has now carried out its second representative survey on behalf of Swisscom on the usage behaviour of over 1,000 young people aged between 12 and 19. The youngsters were asked about their everyday activities, which media they use and how they communicate. While no long-terms trends can be drawn from the second survey, certain tendencies and changes are in evidence. According to the study, an ever-increasing number young people access the Internet on the move, while the share of smartphones has nearly doubled to 80 percent within the space of two years. In addition, two-thirds of those polled admitted to using a smartphone to browse the Internet on a daily basis or several times a week (2010: 16 percent).

"Second screen" generation – simultaneous use of different media

This year's study also revealed that young people frequently use several media at the same time. For example, they listen to music while texting, viewing YouTube videos or browsing Facebook. Nearly half of the respondents claimed that they regularly surf the Internet while watching television. Fifty-nine percent admitted to phoning and texting while watching television.

The JAMES Study also shows increased awareness of the importance of protecting personal data on social networks. Eighty-four percent of those that use social networks said that they actively protect their profile by restricting access. In 2010, only 57 percent said they restricted access to their data.

Despite more and more offerings, very little has changed in how young people spend their leisure time

The study. led by Prof. Dr. Daniel Süss und Gregor Waller, MSc, not only analysed media behaviour, but also questioned users about how they spend their leisure time when they are not using media. They found that the increasing plethora of new media offerings and different access options has had very little impact on the way young people occupy themselves in their free time. Seventy-nine percent still meet up regularly with friends (2010:80 percent), while 32 percent play music (unchanged since 2010) and 20 percent do things with their family (2010: 16 percent).

The study will now be evaluated in detail with a view to identifying regional trends. The finished study will be available in early 2013.

Swisscom as cooperation partner of ZHAW

For young people today, using different electronic devices to access media is part of their everyday lives. It is also the reason why the issues of media competency and youth media protection are so important and why Swisscom is actively involved in both areas. Since 2001, for example, the company has equipped over 6,800 Swiss schools with free Internet access and offers media competency courses to secondary school pupils. The JAMES Study is commissioned by Swisscom and conducted by ZHAW every two years.

ZHAW School of Applied Psychology

The ZHAW's School of Applied Psychology is the leading centre of expertise for the teaching and practice of scientifically based psychology in Switzerland. The university's IAP Institute of Applied Psychology, with its Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes, R&D, consulting services and further education courses, translates scientifically based knowledge into practical everyday applications for people and businesses.

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